"What exactly is a basilica?" Top 5 Page for this destination Vatican City Things to Do Tip by Escadora7
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The Latin word basilica (derived from Greek basiliké stoà, royal stoa), was originally used to describe a Roman public building, usually located at the centre of a Roman town (forum). In architecture, the Roman basilica was a large roofed hall erected for transacting business and disposing of legal matters.
After the Roman Empire became officially Christian, the term came by extension to refer to a large, and important church that has been given special ceremonial rights by the Pope.
The oldest known basilica, the Basilica Porcia, was built in Rome in 184 BCE by Marcus Porcius Cato (Cato the Elder).
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